5 Ways To Reduce Injuries on the Construction Site
It’s no secret, but it isn’t being talked about nearly enough: construction sites are incredibly hazardous environments. According to OSHA, 1 in every 5 workplace fatalities is a construction worker. That’s a staggering figure.
Thankfully, this industry has come a long, long way – and we prove every day that construction can be adaptive, smart, and safe. With an ever-growing database of information to analyze, we’re able to quickly identify the underlying cause of most injuries that occur within the workplace – which means we’ve also identified how to correct those issues, and reduce injury rates on construction sites.
Here are 5 simple ways you can stop injuries from occurring on your construction site:
Conduct a Real Risk Assessment
Before any project begins, the construction site should be inspected for any unusual or potential hazards. Recognizing these hazards and their potential to cause specific accidents will allow you to create a proper safety plan. A thorough risk assessment (often referred to as a job hazard analysis) has even proved to create savings for construction projects in the form of human life, suffering, and – yes – even working capital. A list of preventative measures should be made for each potential hazard. This risk assessment and the accompanying preventative measures document should then be presented to all workers during a safety brief – to appropriately provide the right information, education, and training needed to prevent injuries on site.
Hold Regular Safety Meetings
Regular safety meetings let everyone know that safety is as important as the job itself. Consistently holding a safety meeting provides an opportunity to remind employees of the dangers found in the risk assessment. Typically, we see construction companies use “Toolbox Talks” – short, informal discussions focused on a specific safety issue – to guide these regular meetings. By focusing on a new issue each time, foremen can ensure their crews are reminded of various points of exposure on the jobsite.
Prevent Falls Before They Happen
Falls account for 33% of all construction fatalities – the leading cause of death in the industry. The installation of fall protection systems can prevent a massive portion of your construction site injuries from ever occurring. These systems include guardrails, toeboards, screens, canopy structures, nets, and scaffolding. A final method of fall prevention is a safety harness or lanyard, which we have created in a detailed whitepaper, here.
Conduct Equipment Maintenance Checks Regularly
The kind of machinery we use on construction sites today supersedes anything human beings have ever had the power to control – and that requires a tremendous amount of down-time responsibility; namely, routinely checking equipment and maintaining machinery. Over 75% of struck-by injuries occur from heavy machinery, like trucks or cranes. By regularly – and thoroughly – conducting maintenance checks on these colossal machines, you dramatically increase your ability to prevent injury-causing malfunctions before they happen.
Create a Willful Safety Culture
You can only repeat information and warn your workers so much – most of the situational responsibility lies on their shoulders. They’re the ones with the boots on the ground, performing arduous labor. Therefore, a willful safety culture isn’t just an option; it’s a necessity. By cultivating a team approach to safety culture, you will be giving your workers a tool powerful enough to prevent all construction injuries – the willful desire to do so. Your workers will start actively conducting their own risk assessments at every turn, conducting safety protocols with rigor instead of monotony, and preventing injury by active discussion and awareness. This, alone, can be the catalyst to a completely injury-free construction site.
We hope you take the useful injury-preventing information we have presented here back to your next construction site. Find graphics for each quick-tip and comments from fellow industry professionals on any of our social networks. To start a conversation on how to build a safety culture today, contact us at 630.759.9908 or Info@Optimum-USA.com.